Val-de-Grâce, a former benedictine convent, is a remarkable ensemble of religious baroque architecture in Paris. Located in the 5th arrondissement and somewhat overlooked by the tourists, its fine church was ordered by Queen Anne of Austria, wife of Louis XIII, following the long-awaited birth of a heir, the future Sun King, Louis XIV. The construction, interrupted by internal struggles, took several decades and four architects (Mansart, Lemercier, LeMuet and Le Duc), but was finally completed in 1667.
After the Revolution the abbey became a military hospital and now houses a museum of French army medicine.
The cupola was painted by Pierre Mignard, the canopy, inspired by Bernini, is the work of Gabriel Le Duc.

© Copyright 2012 Marc Haegeman, All rights reserved.

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